If you were famous and being interviewed, picture yourself being asked the typical type of questions about your formative years like: So what was it like growing up in your family? or What influenced you as a child to become such and such? (whatever it is that you’re now famous for) or Was there a pivotal moment or experience when you were growing up that changed the direction of your life to what it is now?

Inquiring minds want to know…..

Could you answer these types of questions? Have you given it much thought? Do you think you have to wait until you’re famous before you even bother to look at this kind of stuff or that it only matters if you are famous?

I don’t.

So, as for myself, as much as churches, schools and the sesame street puppets did their darndest to push and pull me in certain directions, my answer as to what shaped me the most would have to be…things that I inadvertently overheard…remarks that I wasn’t intended to hear. You know, the things people say about you when they think that you’re not around to hear…remarks such as:

  • I wish he were more like his brother sometimes.
  • He’s so gullible. At times, I wonder if he’s just plain stupid.
  • He’s a bit of an oddball alright. He’s better left alone.
  • Unless he starts to apply himself, he’s never going to amount to much.

Now, granted, these types of remarks are and were most often heard out of context, but that does not minimize their impact on a developing young self. We have all experienced them in one form or another and, perhaps even, we were the ones making the remarks that were being overheard. But in the young heart, with no real point of reference to deal with such statements, we can carry a wound that shapes an identity for decades. Misheard, misunderstood and misapplied…these were the remarks that shaped me greatly.

So I ask you again to pretend for a moment that you’re being interviewed.

Search for the answers that are true but not necessarily pretty.

Maybe you are, like I was, suffering from the wrong ideas all along.

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    Disclaimer: Poetic license is at work both here and in my books. Any errors or anomalies are through no fault of my editor. These were left deliberately at my expressed intention to clearly indicate that goodness does not require perfection.

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